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Name: Sarah Griffiths
Question: Hi, wonder if Sue can give me some advice on Acacia dealbata please. Will it survive in a south facing garden that gets full sun all day and gets hot? Does it have to be against a wall or can it be planted centrally in a lawn area? Thanks.
Answer: Hi Sarah, a south-facing position is ideal for Acacia dealbata. They grow quite successfully in mild Southern areas of the country but should still be offered some protection in the form of fleece and a deep dry mulch throughout the winter months while young. They’re very fast-growing given the right conditions - RHS Rosemoor in Devon has several thriving Acacia dealbata trees. A South-facing wall is a good position as the wall retains heat and offers some wind protection too. However, planting centrally in a lawn shouldn’t be a problem provided protection is given during the winter months and the site is fairly sheltered from strong winds. When planting a tree in a lawn, make sure it is planted within a 120cm (4ft) diameter circle of bare earth to reduce weed and grass competition while the tree establishes. After 3 years you can allow the grass to re-establish around the base of the tree. As Acacias mature they do gain more resistance to the effects of frost but if your winters are frequently extreme they will require protection each year. I hope this helps Sarah.
Name: Roy Williams
Question: Hi I bought Tree 'Crystal' Collection Lilium, Oriental Lily planted them but not 1 has started to show, all my other lilies are showing. Was wondering if this grow later or slower as no sign of them yet. They have been planted same time as others and beside others. Thanks.
Answer: Hi Roy, I do find my tree lilies emerge slightly later than the smaller Asiatic and Oriental varieties, and it can also vary between varieties. They will hopefully pop up by the end of the month, but if not it may be worth carefully excavating the bulbs to see what may be causing the delay. Take care not to damage their growing point, taking a wide berth around the area you’ve planted them in, or if container-grown, tipping the compost out of the container gradually. I hope this helps, let us know how you get on.